Great, Chewy, Everyday Blondies | Chocolate Chunk Blondie Recipe

I’m sharing one more blondie recipe with you. Sans bananas. Just a regular blondie with some chocolate and nuts, and sure, you can add some  butterscotch chips in there too, for good measure. It’s a one-bowl crowd pleasing treat. The recipe is from my current favourite baking book, Pooja Dhingra’s The Big Book Of Treats. I’ve baked about a dozen recipes (some, many times over,) from the book so far, and each and every one of them has turned out well.

While I have made some wonderful cakes and cookies from Nigella Lawson’s How To Be A Domestic Goddess, I find The Big Book Of Treats way more useful because it comes from an Indian pastry chef, writing for an Indian audience, keeping the Indian kitchen in mind. I shall post a detailed review once I’ve baked a few more treats from the book!

This should be your base recipe when you want to make blondies, and a go-to recipe for those times when you have surprise guests, a last-minute dinner party or a school bake sale you didn’t know about!

 

Blondie moment

Blondie moment

(Ok I’m going to honest with you- these last-minute situations never seem to happen with me. My family and small circle of friends are pretty good with advance notice- so we know when someone’s coming around for a meal. And my son is 3. So not many bake sales happening around these parts. But so many easy store-cupboard recipes come with the promise of solving the busy-trap, so I had to put it in there.)

These are quick, easy to put together and ready in under an hour. And chewy-crusty-gooey delicious. My chocolate chips actually melted in the summer heat and welded into one solid, bumpy mass, so I had to hack away and break it up into chunks. And it actually worked really well for this recipe, because irregular-sized chocolate pieces lend an element of surprise as you bite in. You don’t know if you’re going to get a little fleck of chocolate on the tip of your tongue, or a nice big gob of melting goodness.

I’ll be honest with you…even though I’ve glossed eloquent about how simple, low-effort and minimal-energy these blondies are, you don’t have to keep them for a rushed day: bake them for a special occasion too. (I know, I know, the right term is waxed eloquent, but when talking about food, you’d much rather something be glossy than waxy, right? Except potatoes.) 

I encourage you to bake them because they are really good to eat. Sweet. Chocolatey. Nutty. A little crunchy and a little chewy. And their simplicity is what makes them charming.

I take my chocolate chunks very seriously.

I take my chocolate chunks very seriously.

These are great with ice cream and make for much better milk-dippables than Oreos. Be sure to add nuts- a little nibble makes it much more fun.

EVERYDAY BLONDIES (Adapted very slightly from The Big Book Of Treats)

INGREDIENTS

  • 100 g butter, melted
  • 200 g brown sugar (I used Mawana light brown sugar)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Seeds from 1/2 a vanilla bean
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 120 g flour
  • 60 g of walnuts + chocolate chunks

METHOD

  • Preheat the oven to 175 C
  • Grease and line an 8-inch baking tin (I used a 6×6 inch square tin and it worked fine,) and set aside
  • Sift the flour, baking powder and baking soda in a bowl and set aside
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy
  • Add the beaten egg and vanilla bean and whisk some more
  • Fold in the flour mixture
  • Fold in the walnuts and chocolate chunks
  • Pour the batter into the prepared tin, spread evenly and bake at 175 C for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

Banana Blondies, Kind Of Cakey

I made another batch of banana blondies. These didn’t have a crust to hold them up, but they didn’t really need one either. I used the recipe from Smitten Kitchen and added half a cup of mashed banana like Deb suggested.

The post itself talks about how adaptable blondie batter is, and all the diverse add-ins that complement it. Nuts. Bananas. Peppermint extract. Cranberries. Coconut. It’s a pretty forgiving batter that way…takes really well to diverse flavour combinations :) And you can’t really go wrong, whatever you put in. (Unless you get totally freaky and add harissa paste or garam masala, then nothing can save your blondies.)

Banana blondies

Banana blondies

The original post was published in November 2006- a while ago. Just made me realize how long Deb has been cooking and sharing and tempting us with her versatile recipes and beautiful images. But if you look towards the bottom of the post, you’ll notice that she added an update as recent as May 24th, 2014- yes, less than a month ago- so I stand by my statement that there is a blondie renaissance happening in the blogosphere. Her update swaps melted butter for brown butter like Melissa Clark, a toning down of the brown sugar, and the addition of flaky sea salt. (Also- I feel the salty-sweet combination is majorly on-trend right now! Maple-bacon, chocolate-sea salt, and of course, classic salted caramel.)

...a little cakey inside.

The blondie batter is simple, and not very different from Melissa Clark’s, except for the proportions and the use of melted butter vs brown butter. Baked as plain blondies, they appear to be quite chewy…but that half cup of mashed banana brings on the fluff. So while this recipe yields a shiny, crackly top, beneath, it’s more banana bread than fudgy. Continue reading

Blondie Ambition : Melissa Clark’s Chocolate-Crusted Banana Blondies

I have been on a blondie-baking spree. Is it just me, or are blondies having a moment once again? Sizzling brownies are not going off dessert menus  in India anytime soon (and honestly, in most restaurants, what you get is a burnt brownie, not a sizzling one,) but I can’t help but notice how blondies have been doing the rounds on the blogosphere. Just look here,  here,  here  and here. And each adapted in a fun, eat-the-batter-with-a-spoon way!

I know blondies are nothing new, they have been around for ages now. I was re-introduced to them via Melissa Clark’s NYT column, A Good Appetite. (I absolutely love her recipes and innovations- and her use of good-quality pantry ingredients to make an everyday meal special.) I was suddenly in the blondie fast lane. I looked them up on every possible online food publication and blog, read and re-read recipes from magazines and cookbooks, was kind of shocked when I learned Nigella’s How To Be A Domestic Goddess didn’t have a blondie recipe…I even stalked a prominent British food writer’s Instagram stream and point-blank asked her if she had a perfect blondie recipe.

After browsing recipes for a while, it was the variations in sugar combinations that struck me most- with each recipe using some form of brown sugar.

Ina Garten: Lightly packed light brown sugar + granulated sugar

Alice Medrich: Tightly packed light brown sugar

Bobby Flay: Light brown muscovado + dark brown muscovado

Deb Perelman: Dark brown sugar

Pooja Dhingra: Light brown sugar

But the recipe I’m sharing today is none of the above, it’s what got me interested in blondies in the first place: Melissa Clark’s Chocolate-Crusted Banana Blondies. Continue reading